MOAAP is focused on the health of all children. This webpage is a resource for Missouri pediatricians, primary care providers, educators, and parents on the important issue of e-cigarettes and vaping. This resource was created to provide information on addressing the ongoing increase in youth tobacco and vaping usage across the United States, including right here in Missouri.
Kids aren’t just experimenting with these products, they are becoming addicted. In 2019, 24.8% of Missouri high school youth reported currently using any tobacco product, including e-cigarettes. Among Missouri high school youth, 6.5% reported currently smoking cigarettes. Nearly 40% of high school students are using e-cigarettes at least 20 days a month and over 730,000 middle and high school students are vaping every single day. Flavored products are driving this epidemic- up to 82.9% of youth e-cigarette users use flavored products.
MOAAP is working with the American Academy of Pediatrics to educate on the resources and treatment options for youth as it relates to tobacco use. E-cigarettes and their terminology are needlessly varied and ever-changing, creating a unique challenge for physicians and parents trying to stay informed. Now more than ever it is important to screen youth for vaping and provide counseling and support for cessation. We hope you will use this resource to educate yourself, your practice, and your community on this important child health issue.
Substance use screening and anticipatory guidance is an important part of teen well-child visits. The growing prevalence of e-cigarette use and the high conversion rate to addiction makes this a critical opportunity to intervene.
Educators & Parents
Due to new designs and technology, vaping can easily be concealed by teens. Parents and educators who spend every day with our teens can be the aptest to identify and reach out to teens who may be using or abusing e-cigarettes. Finding ways to support teens to quit vaping (or never start) is preferred over punitive approaches.
If you or a friend use e-cigarettes more than you would like, there are many programs, websites, and apps that can help you quit. Also, consider speaking with your healthcare provider as they may be aware of additional resources or in some circumstances may be able to prescribe medication that could help.